Contrary to the opinion of Super Eagles coach Gernort Rohr that Nigeria’s captain John Mikel Obi is being punished by Chelsea boss for going to the Rio 2016 Olympics in Brazil, former Super Eagles coach Samson Siasia has opined that Mikel was never in Conte’s plan from the onset.
The former U-23 coach, who led the Beijing 2008 Olympic team to a silver medal finish, rubbished talks of the 29-year old being punished by his boss with no playing time for his club.
“I don’t believe Mikel was being punished because he went to the Rio Olympics with the Nigerian team. Conte does not have him in his plans. That was why he even allowed him to go to the Games and he bought Kante as a replacement. So all these talks about being punished is not true,” Siasia told reporters.
“As far as I am concerned Mikel has paid his dues with Chelsea and had won whatever is there to win with the club, and there is no better time to move on than now. After serving the club for over 10 years, there can be no better time to leave than now,” he stated.
The estwhile Super Eagles key player also revealed that Mikel had confided in him about leaving the English Premier League side before now.
“Mikel told me that he has made up his mind to leave Chelsea, and if he does not leave in January, he would leave in the summer.
“He has excelled for both club and country, and does not deserve to just be a squad member at Chelsea. He should be playing regular football.” he added.
Chelsea are currently at the top of the English Premier League table, and with Conte’s 3-4-3 formation excelling, the Eagles captain may likely have no place in the Italian’s starting XI.
However, speaking from London, Coach Rohr, who was together with the NFF President and other officials and players, including Mikel Obi, at the signing of a new Nike deal, told newsmen categorically, “He is moving come January transfer window. He cannot stay in a club he is not playing. So he has to move.”
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